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General Product Question

    Mike W
    What’s the diff between the 450, 450e, and 450 Rancher? W...escalated
    General Product Question posted July 29, 2014 by Mike W 
    12582 Views, 3 Comments
    What’s the diff between the 450, 450e, and 450 Rancher?

    Why is the Husqvarna website such a pitiful piece of poo? Seriously. Both the organization and the accuracy of information are deficient. Oh, it’s got lots of pretty product pictures, for sure. And it certainly has the complex trappings of an informative site. But it actually hinders effective communication of sales information to consumers. The IT management in charge of the website should be fired.

    I need to buy a new chainsaw and have kind of zeroed in on the 450. It looks like there are three models; the 450, the 450e, and the 450 Rancher. I would like to get authoritative information about the differences between the models. I’d also like to know the significance of the ‘Rancher’ designation across the several models it’s applied to. (Along with ‘e’ and XP.)

    Based on the performance specs, it looks like all three models have the identical engine, tanks and major housing components. The MSRP for the saws are: $360 for the base 450 model, $370 for the 450e, and $400 for the 450 Rancher. The listed weights for the three models also differ from one another.

    The only difference between the base model and the ‘e’ seems to be the Tool-less Adjustment. A $10 premium for that feature, fine. 8.5 ounces additional weight for what I assume to be no more than a substitution of the sprocket/bar-attachment cover seems high, but, whatever.

    Now what’s the story with the 450 Rancher? The only difference I can find seems to be ‘side mounted chain tensioning’. For this there is a $40 premium over the base 450 model. Interestingly (I’m being ironic), the ‘Compare’ list for the 450 and the 450 Rancher when lined up against each other indicates that the Rancher lacks the Smart Start feature. The ‘pretty little thumbnail icon’ for SmartStart is also absent from the 450 Rancher’s web page while the text on the same page claims the feature is present. I’m thinking it’s likely on the saw since manufacturers tend to only make superficial differences between models to limit costs. So why isn’t there a ‘compare’ line item for the side adjust feature? No cutesy icon for it either? The feature information discrepancies call into question the accuracy and reliability of any other information on Husqvarna’s website because they evidently don’t care to proofread.

    On the issue of website organization: I originally landed directly on the …us/products/chainsaws/husqvarna-chainsaws-for-homeowners/ page from a google search. (Not by starting at the top of the site.) Only the 450 and the 450 Rancher are listed and described there. I found out about the 450e from a retailer’s website and at first thought it might be a recently discontinued model since it wasn’t on the Husqvarna site. It wasn’t until I went hunting over to the ‘Pro Forestry’ side that I located the 450e. WTF? If ‘e’ means ‘easy’ (does it?) wouldn’t that be a homeowner type feature? I’d think pro’s would most value safety and reliability, but I guess that’s just me. While the plain 450 is listed on both sides of the website fence between homeowner and pro, that division prevents the 450e and the 450 Rancher from being put side by side in the ‘Compare’ feature.

    Here’s a question: If the 450e has the Tool-Less adjuster, and the 450 Rancher has the side adjuster, what does the plain 450 have? Spot welds? How about putting some close up photos with method of operation for all chain adjuster versions on the site?

    Another ‘stupid web trick’ is that the ‘Compare’ feature behaves differently on the Homeowner and the Pro Forestry sides. The Pro side simply presents the list and lets you scroll up and down to read it. The Homeowner side requires you to click on each section of the list to open it for reading. Then, as you scroll, an incredibly annoying copy of the product thumbnails has to plaster itself over the top several lines that you’re trying to read. All the pictures look pretty much alike people! Fine, keep the model name/number at the top while scrolling, that’s helpful. But jumping pictures? Those are almost as bad as popup ads.

    Based on my experience, It looks to me like Husqvarna’s site is more enamored with web coding gymnastics and glossy thumbnails than focused on conveying accurate, easily understood sales information in a timely and concise fashion. Squirrel! In other words I wasted too much time on it and still don’t have high confidence in the answers to my questions.

    Of course, as soon as I found some problems with the site, I looked for a support page to email the manufacturer. It was not to be found. To me, that’s a hallmark of a company that doesn’t really give much of a *** about its customers. But wait! There’s a support forum I can register to use… and waste a whole bunch more time getting in and around just to get some simple answers that should have been in the website in the first place. No offense to the natives of this forum, but I only wanted to buy a dang chainsaw not have a new social experience. I’ve dealt with several other support forums some good, some terrible. I just didn’t relish taking more time to deal with another one.

    One last nitpick about some inadvertent website buffoonery. The 450e is located with the ‘round’ chainsaws. LOL! The Pro Forestry page offers a selection of saws: XP, Powerful, Round, Pole, or Top Handle. Say what? Made me laugh. Yeah, yeah, I know, it’s a British-ism. Although inconsistently done, in some places with the hyphen and some without. But this is a US sales website and generally in North America the phase is ‘All-Around’ to mean that something is general purpose in nature. For a usage reference with citations from major publications see:

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    • Bowl Turner

      I enjoyed your message, especially since this is 4 years later and I ran into the same problems when I bought a Rancher 455. The ran the same confusing model differences with no details to be found on the website. When I tried to get parts number information for my new saw, the website asked for a model number. It rejected my typing in "Rancher 455." There was no model number to be found on the saw itself. I finally dug around enough to find that there could be about six different manuals for the Rancher 455, all you needed was to guess which one of the six it might be. Husqvarna is a joke when it comes to customer support..they don't have any...and maybe they don't have phones since none are listed. I've only used the saw once, but based on what I have seen so far, I wouldn't recommend them to anyone. The equipment might be OK, but mgmt is goofy to think people will put up with inadequate and misleading information and still have a favorable view of the company and their equipment. I don't know if it is true or not, but my impression is the company is on the verge of going out of business. I feel like a fool for spending $500 on a product that is obviously on the way out. 

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    • Jonathan Lemieux

      I have the same trouble here. My friend is a Husqvarna dealer but is really busy and he live away from me now. So I want to purchase my next chainsaw from him without harrasing him with a ton of question. He told me he have a great deal on 450e including husky case for 539.99$ CAD. So I'm really curious and I try to figure out the spec of this. 

      The website isn't clear but I assume the 450e must be the 450 e series. But WTH the website have 3 near identical spec 450. The 450e weight .2 kg more and another 450 have the easy start with the stop/choke dual fonction knob. Some have flip cap and the other don't. 

      So I goggle that thing a little bit and find e serie have the tool less chain adjust feature but nothing write about that on the website. Ask my friend to send me some picture of the 450e and I clearly see no toolless adjust system and this one also have the stop/choke dual fonction knob. So finaly... what I really buy  ? why so many identical chainsaw ? Can Husky can put more picture of their product and begin to give more information about this similar product....

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    • Bowl Turner

      Jonathan, Your experience with Husqvarna is dead on, but don't expect ANY response from them. I asked a question about model numbers on the Rancher 455 I had just purchased. I wanted to find out which owner's manual to use. That was over a year ago and no response. As much as I hate it, go buy a Stihl. They support their products.

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